YouthTruth’s survey of the student experience invites students to advise adults on improving their schools and communities. Their advice is often pointed, highlighting key elements of effective learning environments, supportive relationships, and the need for adults to engage students as agents of change in their communities.

We collect and organize students’ comments for our clients, providing tools to help school leaders listen better so they can do better.

Do something. Make changes. Do better.

Whether adults realize it or not, you’re a role model to young people you encounter in your day to day life – you can uplift young people’s voices, educate us on our rights,  and have a direct impact on our future.

I think that teachers don’t realize how much we have or haven’t learned. They often refer to things we didn’t learn last year as, “previous knowledge” and often associate confusion with “not putting in the effort.”

Schools could better prepare their students for more than just college and set us up with a better understanding of how to navigate the world ahead.  I would teach students  good money and time management,  how to get a job and taxes, finance a house, basic everyday skills.

I have strong relationships with some of my teachers where I feel comfortable telling them about my life outside of school and they check up on me. These teachers are my favorite because I know they want the best for me and they actually care.

We’re young, but we deserve respect. My guess is that the “[Mental Health]” days are a result of us telling you we need a safe place, and you guys choosing to create a program by yourselves without working with us. That’s a huge issue. You said it yourself: don’t just HEAR us, LISTEN to us. You *have* to work alongside us.

This school is wonderful at helping staff, teachers, and students separately, but rarely helps the school as a whole. Imagine how much bullying could be prevented if EVERYONE stood up and said “Enough is enough!” Please consider my request, and thank you for your time.

Listen to what students actually have to say because so much more good can come from it. Students experience so much first hand. If you pay attention to what they say you may learn something from it.

Sample student comments